The family and friends of slain local rap artist Tyriece “Lor Scoota” Watson announced Wednesday plans to celebrate his life and artistry over the next three days.
Minister Marvin McKenstry said the circumstances of Scoota’s death have overshadowed his legacy.
“We declare today that we want people to see past that as we continue to pray and seek justice in his murder that we begin today to celebrate as a city, as a community and as a people the life and legacy of this talented and brilliant young man,” he said.
Scoota was gunned down Saturday after leaving a peace rally at Morgan State University. Police have asked the public to send videos, pictures and other media of the inside of the rally as they continue to search for suspects.
The group that also included community leaders said they are going to recognize Scoota as a young man who inspired young people to believe they can achieve anything if they are willing to work hard.
Derrick Chase, with Stand Up Baltimore, said they want parents to sit down with their children and listen to Lor Scoota’s music.
“We want you to listen to every one of the lyrics,” he said. “And we want you to listen to how they enjoy the music. And we want you to do something very special with your child.”
There will be a viewing for Scoota from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday at Wylie Funeral Home at Harlem Avenue and North Mount Street with local rap artists paying tribute to Scoota between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.
Scoota’s funeral will take place at 11:00 Friday morning at the Empower Temple A.M.E Church in Park Heights.
After the funeral, a community repast will begin at 4 p.m. in the area of Pennsylvania and West Lafayette avenues. The marquee from the old Royal Theatre at that intersection will be changed to honor Scoota.
“We’re gonna take that sign and we’re gonna change that sign to say ‘rest in peace Lor Scoota,” said Chase.
The group is also trying to organize a summit in August to allow city youth to talk directly to community leaders.
Nicole Change, also from Stand Up Baltimore, said she wants kids to express how they really feel about how adults are running things.
“We’re not going to coach our children,” she said. “We’re not going to tell them what not to say. We need you in here to hear what they have to say.”